Madoff: The Final Word (Hardcover)

Madoff: The Final Word By Richard Behar Cover Image
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Fifteen years after Bernie Madoff’s arrest, renowned investigative journalist Richard Behar delivers the definitive account of history’s largest—and longest-running—financial fraud.

Some $68 billion evaporated during Bernie Madoff’s epic confidence game. Two people were driven to suicide in the wake of the Ponzi Scheme’s exposure. Others went to prison. But there has never been a satisfying accounting for how Bernie got away with so much, for so long. Until now.

Richard Behar’s relationship with Madoff began in 2011 with a simple email request from the inmate. By the time Madoff died in 2021, he had sent Behar more than 300 emails and dozens of handwritten letters, participated in some fifty phone conversations, and sat for three in-person jailhouse interviews—a level of access provided to no other reporter. Behar also established relationships with hundreds of regulators, prosecutors, FBI agents, investors, Wall Street experts, ex-employees of Madoff’s, family members, school classmates, and others.

The result is the final word on the criminal behind history’s most enduring fraud—and on those who believed him, covered for him, or locked him up. Behar illuminates not only the fraud’s origins—decades earlier than Madoff claimed in his confession—but also the complicity of investors, Wall Street insiders, family members, and some of the largest banks in the US and Europe.

Shocking, infuriating, riveting (and at times absurdly funny), Madoff shows us how Bernie ensnared thousands of investors. As Behar’s dogged reporting over the last fifteen years makes clear, however, there aren’t many innocents left standing by the end of this tale. Just about everyone involved is guilty, at a minimum, of humanity’s most consistent weakness: greed.

About the Author

Richard Behar is a contributing editor for Forbes, and an associate producer and narrator of an upcoming docuseries on organized crime in the former Soviet Union. He previously worked on the staffs of Fortune and Time, and carried out probes for Fast Company, CNN, and BBC. In 1998, he conducted the only prison interview of Dennis Helliwell, who ran the longest-known Ponzi scheme prior to Madoff’s arrest. In 2005, Behar launched Project Klebnikov, a global media alliance committed to shedding light on the Moscow murder of his friend and colleague, Forbes editor Paul Klebnikov. Over a four-decade career, Behar has garnered more than twenty journalism awards. Madoff: The Final Word is his first book.

Praise For…

“Behar approaches this towering mountain of material with rigor. . . . Madoff: The Final Word carefully explains complicated matters like the turned cheek of J.P. Morgan Chase, which Behar calls ‘a gluttonous hydra when it came to Bernie,’ and the trial of the Madoff Five. . . . Behar, too, seems determined to see Madoff’s humanity, and the tragedy of his family.” The New York Times

“A savvy debut . . . Behar skillfully elucidates Madoff’s scheme. . . . Behar’s entertaining account shows how easily a sociopathic liar will be enabled by a greedy system.” Publishers Weekly

“A penetrating account of the web of lies that won the late con man Bernie Madoff his billions . . . A well-written, swift-moving story of true crime and punishment.” Kirkus Reviews

Product Details
ISBN: 9781476726892
ISBN-10: 1476726892
Publisher: Avid Reader Press / Simon & Schuster
Publication Date: July 9th, 2024
Pages: 384
Language: English

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